Jonte makes Crawley Town debut
Bermudian teenager Jonte Smith made his first team debut for Crawley Town as they suffered a 3-0 defeat at the hands of Bournemouth.
Smith came on in the 79th minute as Crawley, 2-0 down, tried to salvage something from the League One match at the Goldsands Stadium.
The south coast club took the lead in the 16th minute through a Gary Alexander own goal before further strikes from Brett Pitman (41st) and Eunan O’Kane (84th) gave Bournemouth the points to leave Crawley in eighth place in the table.
The 18-year-old Smith was thrilled to play his part despite the defeat.
"It was a special moment for me and one I will never forget,” he told the club’s website. “I just wish we had finished up getting a better result.
"I got the call from the manager and I thought I did fine when I came on. I wish I'd had an opportunity to get a chance at goal. It was a big milestone for me and I hope there are many more to come."
Manager Richie Barker stated: "Every player remembers their debut and I was delighted to give Jonte his, even though the game ended in disappointment for him and us. He's a good kid with a lot of potential who is only going to improve."
Crawley’s next match is at home to Colchester on New Year’s Day.
Smith becomes the latest Bermuda player to play in the English leagues, joining Nahki Wells who is leading scorer at League Two side Bradford. Wells missed Saturday’s 4-2 home defeat to Rochdale because of a stomach virus.
Smith has been showing his scoring prowess this season while on a loan spell with Ryman League team Metropolitan Police where he netted 24 goals in 19 appearances. Crawley opted not to send him on loan to another club and instead the youngster has been given the opportunity to break through into the first team.